So You Think You Want a Brick Mailbox

Many people have asked us if we install brick mailboxes.

Well, the answer is quite simply, “Nope!”

While you may see many brick mailboxes throughout your community, most local municipalities have banned new installations.

There are many reasons for this, but the foremost is safety.

Mailbox posts are supposed to be designed to break away in the event of a collision with a moving vehicle.  Regulations state that a post must be made of:

Wood- No greater than 4″ diameter square or round.

Steel- Thin wall steel  no greater than 2″ diameter round or square.

Even if you look at road signs mounted on a 6″ wooden post, you will notice that near the bottom there are 2″ holes drilled into the post so it will break away in the event of a collision. The ones made of steel are perforated for the same reasons.

What happens when you create a mailbox out of brick or any kind of heavy duty material such as a railroad tie or heavy steel is you create what the DOT (Dept. of Transportation) calls a,” Deadly fixed object.”

If a vehicle (municipal such as a snowplow or privately owned) strikes your heavy duty mailbox you can be held liable for damages incurred to the vehicle or any injury (or God forbid) death incurred by the collision.

So, what most municipalities have done is require a building permit for brick mailboxes, but if you actually apply for one, it will NEVER be approved, putting you out the fees for the permit application. Some communities make you apply for land use covenants which are complicated to obtain.

If you find a contractor who is willing to work without permits to install your brick mailbox you could end up out of a lot of money and a possible liability lawsuit later. For instance you give your contractor a deposit, he starts the work and an inspector drives by… the inspector can halt the work immediately and make you remove whatever work has been started. Likewise, if an inspector notices a brand new brick mailbox in a given neighborhood he can make you dismantle it. Either way your out of a lot of money! Lastly, if someone runs their car into your brick mailbox and goes head first into their windshield and they lawyer up, you can be taken to court and sued.

So be wise in your decision about what type of mailbox you wish to install. There are a lot of elegant post mount mailboxes that are sure to compliment your landscape and your beautiful home.

Additional links regarding mailboxes by some of the local communities:

Naperville Illinois mailbox guidelines

Lisle Illinois mailbox guidelines

Wheaton Illinois  mailbox guidelines

Downers Grove Illinois mailbox guidelines

Batavia Illinois mailbox guidelines

Geneva Illinois mailbox guidelines

Plainfield-Shorewood Illinois mailbox guidelines

St. Charles Illinois Mailbox Guidelines

There are too many municipalities to list here, but if you are planning to build a brick mailbox, it’s always a good idea to check with your community’s building department.

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